Thursday, December 31, 2009

Groundhog Weather School is a Tuesday Tales pick on Margo Dill's Read These Books and Use Them!

Margo Dill's review of Groundhog Weather School goes the extra mile in creating three activities for use in elementary classrooms.
Her rating for Groundhog Weather School:
*Picture book for kindergarten students through third graders
*Groundhog teacher as main character
*Rating: A perfect picture book to celebrate Groundhog’s Day or to supplement a weather unit in science!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Press Release for Groundhog Weather School


Author JOAN HOLUB’s new hardcover picture book for children is “clever…amusing…inviting…and witty” says Booklist.
December 28, 2009 (NC) – readertotz co-founder and author/illustrator Joan Holub’s new hardcover picture book Groundhog Weather School has just been released from G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers. The quirky, comic-book style illustration style by Kristin Sorra “really lets readers get into the premise and allows for diverse facts to be presented in little snippets (and funny comments to be assigned to each unique groundhog). Bright colors, textures and the incorporation of found objects, as well as the busyness of each page will keep readers searching the artwork” says Kirkus Reviews.
Joan Holub says, “I always wondered how in the world one groundhog could possibly predict the weather for everywhere, and I decided he couldn’t—he needed some help, so why not start a school to teach more groundhogs to assist him in predicting the weather on February 2nd!”
Groundhog Weather School introduces a cast of school-age animals who learn basic facts about weather, shadows, and seasons; and is the perfect book for Groundhog Day, February 2nd 2010.
About Joan Holub
Joan Holub is the author and/or illustrator of over 120 books for children, including picture books (Knuckleheads; Riddle-iculous Math) and easy readers (Shampoodle; Why Do Cats Meow?; The Gingerbread Kid Goes to School.)
Kristin Sorra is an illustrator in New York. Her clients include: DC Comics, Amscan, Inc., Cricket Magazine, Peaceable Kingdom Press, and more.
readertotz is a blog which showcases infant-toddler books as important additions to children’s literature.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Little Willow and Joan Holub do WBBT today!

After going to KidLitCon last month in D.C. and meeting so many dedicated children's book bloggers, it has been fun to visit some of their blogs all week in the Winter Blog Blast Tour 2009 (WBBT).

According to Little Willow: For the past two years, Colleen from Chasing Ray has organized series upon series of author interviews. These blog tours, hosted and posted at various blogs, have been dubbed the Summer Blog Blast Tour (SBBT for short) and Winter Blog Blast Tour (aka WBBT). Each event is one week long and involves a multitude of authors, bloggers, and readers.

Little Willow was kind enough to include me in WBBT at her blog at today. Drop by if you're in the neighborhood.

Here's the rest of the impressive lineup for Friday, November 20th:

Friday, November 20th
Lisa Schroeder at Writing & Ruminating
Alan DeNiro at Shaken & Stirred
Joan Holub at Bildungsroman (aka Little Willow's fabulous Slayground blog)
Pam Bachorz at Mother Reader
Sheba Karim at Finding Wonderland
Robin LaFevers at HipWriterMama

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Winter Blog Blast Tour begins Monday!

The 2009 WBBT (Winter Blog Blast Tour) begins Monday! For the past two years Colleen Mondor of Chasing Ray has organized week-long blogs in summer (SBBT) and winter (WBBT). Amazing authors and bloggers come together beginning today. Check out the Master Schedule below for blog appearances Monday through Friday of this week! Colleen will update the master schedule daily with links and author quotes.

Monday, November 16th
Jim Ottaviani at Chasing Ray
Courtney Sheinmel at Bildungsroman
Derek Landy at Finding Wonderland
Mary E. Pearson at Miss Erin
Megan Whalen Turner at HipWriterMama
Frances Hardinge at Fuse Number 8

Tuesday, November 17th
Ann Marie Fleming at Chasing Ray
Laurie Faria Stolarz at Bildungsroman
Patrick Carman at Miss Erin
Jacqueline Kelly at HipWriterMama
Dan Santat at Fuse Number 8
Nova Ren Suma at Shelf Elf

Wednesday, November 18th
Sy Montgomery Pt 1 at Chasing Ray
Jacqui Robbins at Bildungsroman
Sarwat Chadda at Finding Wonderland
Cynthia Leitich Smith at HipWriterMama
Beth Kephart at Shelf Elf

Thursday, November 19th
Sy Montgomery Pt 2 at Chasing Ray
Laini Taylor at Shelf Elf
Jim DiBartolo at Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast
Amanda Marrone at Writing & Ruminating
Thomas Randall at Bildungsroman
Michael Hague at Fuse Number 8

Friday, November 20th
Lisa Schroeder at Writing & Ruminating
Alan DeNiro at Shaken & Stirred
Joan Holub at Bildungsroman
Pam Bachorz at Mother Reader
Sheba Karim at Finding Wonderland
Robin LaFevers at HipWriterMama

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Twinkle Star of the Week and Apple Countdown at AASL in Charlotte, NC Friday!

If you're at AASL this Friday, please stop by the Albert Whitman & Co. booth 2 - 4 pm. I'd love to meet you. I'll be signing Apple Countdown and we'll have my glittery new picture book, Twinkle, Star of the Week on hand.

I hope to see you there!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Children's Literature Center at the Library of Congress

I had the pleasure of attending the 3rd annual KidLitCon 2009 last weekend, which was organized by Pam at MotherReader. What a great time. Informative and fun. Not only did we have a day of bloggeriffic speakers on Saturday, we also had the opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes look at the Children's Literature Center at the Library of Congress Friday afternoon. My friend Barbara and I arrived a bit late, but the LOC folks were amazingly accommodating to the latecomers in our group. Several winding corridors and a spiral staircase later, we were in! We heard talks by Sybille Jagusch PhD, who showed us a James Marshall original dummy and sketch, and by another wonderful guy whose name I didn't get in the rare books room, who showed us 15th century books. What an experience! I felt so lucky to get a peek in the back rooms. As usual, I had no camera. Luckily my pal Barbara brought hers, which is why I can share these photos.

Bill Prosser of listens in the rare books room of the LOC. You can't see it here, but the tabletop had a really cool swirly tree-ring design which Bill and I wondered about. From real trees? Antique? We'll never know.

Me in the Children's Literature Center, where the lovely Sybille and her cohorts were kind enough to display the books of visiting authors. I only wish my blog partner at readertotz, Lorie Ann Grover could have made it this year. She attended in 2008 and told me how great it was. She was right!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

My new book Shampoodle released this week!

Shampoodle is finally in stores this week! It's a Random House Step Into Reading title for ages 4-7.
Many thanks to Kirkus Reviews for this lovely review! I so agree that Tim's art is fabulous!

Holub, Joan
Illus. by Tim Bowers
This Step into Reading title is a crazed, out-of-breath, fly-on-the-wall peek at picture-day morning at the Shampoodle salon for dogs. Four stylists are simply no match for seven rambunctious dogs. Add in the distraction of three cats, and chaos ensues. Snappy rhyming verses lead children through the fiasco to the hysterical hairstyles that are the result (all, oddly enough, look remarkably like the stylists that crafted them): “New hair. Blue hair. / Beads with knots. / Purple hair with polka dots. / Spiked hair. Mohawk. / Striped like skunk. / Glitter critter. / Super funk.” Short sentences, easy vocabulary and a large font fit the Step 2 level. Bowers’s characters all have wonderful personality, especially the pooches. Beginning readers will have to stop laughing at the pictures before they will be able to read the text. Very funny—there may be a short film in this somewhere. (Early reader. 4-7)

Friday, July 10, 2009

Goddess Girls dedication contest: Your name in our book!

We're so excited about our new chapter book series, Goddess Girls, and want to dedicate it to you--our readers! That's ages 8 to 12 and librarians, teachers, and book bloggers!

The series begins in Spring 2010 from Aladdin Paperbacks with:
Athena The Brain
Persephone the Phony.

1. Take the quiz below.
2. Drop a comment on this blog (or email joanholub at aol dot com) and tell us which goddessgirl (or two) you’re most like.
3. Leave a contact email or blog address where we can notify you if you're chosen.

Winners' names will be included in the book's dedication page and each winner will receive a free copy of the book after it’s published. Names will be randomly chosen by September 15th. Good luck!!!

~ Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams

Which Goddessgirl are You?

Your favorite color is:
a. Yellow when I’m happy, black when I’m not.
b. Dark pink, light pink, hot pink, bright pink. PINK!
c. Whatever. As long as it’s not red.
d. Yegods! Why should it matter what color I wear?

Your general outlook on life is:
a. Sunny, but sometimes your mood turns dark, and that’s okay with you.
b. Viewed through the prism of romance. You love to play matchmaker with your friends!
c. Life’s a contest, and you like to compete. You’re very athletic and you also like board games.
d. Intellectual. There’s just so much to learn, and you sop up knowledge like a sponge.

When it comes to boys:
a. You go for the guy who is different and off-beat, and maybe a bit mysterious.
b. Anyone cute catches your eye; you’re an equal-opportunity flirter.
c. Yuck! Who gives a rip about boys?
d. Sure, you notice them, but you’re much too busy with schoolwork and after school activities to concern yourself with boys.

What some people don’t know about you is that deep down:
a. You “dance to a different drummer,” not always liking the same things your friends like.
b. You sometimes worry that other people—especially boys— like you more for your looks than for your other many good qualities.
c. You don’t really dislike boys as much as you claim to.
d. You worry that you’re not as smart as others think you are.

Given an hour or two of free time, you’d rather spend it:
a. Wandering around in a lovely garden or park.
b. Experimenting with make-up and hairstyles.
c. Playing with a pet or doing anything active.
d. Reading a book.

Add up the number of A’s, B’s, C’s, and D’s. If you have more A’s, you’re most like Persephone, B’s, you’re most like Aphrodite, C’s, you’re most like Artemis, D’s, you’re most like Athena. Or you might be a half-and-half mix of two goddessgirls!

(Note: If you're chosen, we may ask you to have your parents send us an email that it's okay to include your name.)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


I've just learned that my upcoming book Shampoodle is part of the 25th anniversary of Step Into Reading at Random House! This is extra-lucky because it's appearing in some ads such as this one in Learning Magazine:

by Joan Holub, illustrated by Tim Bowers
Random House
Step Into Reading (step 2) early reader: pre-K to grade 1
October 2009

Monday, February 2, 2009

Aaron Zenz: the HICCUPotamus

There was a hippopotamus
Who hiccupped quite-a-lotamus.
And every time he got’emus. . .
. . . He’d fall upon his bottomus.

Wordplay is one of my favorite things, and it abounds in this clever picture book by author-illustrator, Aaron Zenz. When hippopotamus gets hiccups, his friends employ various “helpful” methods of assisting him to overcome them. (His friends include a yellow elephant, and a rhinoceros using dental flosserous.) After much trial and error, hippo is cured. And then. Hic! His friends come down hiccups themselves as shown in this page, rendered in Prismacolor pencil:

Inside Scoop:

Multi-talented Aaron Zenz has worked as a fine artist, graphic designer, multimedia designer, and illustrator. He’s also the author of one of my favorite blogs, Bookie Woogie, which he creates with his children. It's a very entertaining and informative view of what kids think and say about books as they're reading them.

the HICCUPotamus
Aaron Zenz, author-illustrator
Dogs in Hats, publisher, 2005
(also published by Scholastic book clubs)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Knuckleheads on Bookie Woogie!

If you haven't found the Bookie Woogie blog yet, take a look.  It's a one-of-a-kind, in which a family reviews a book together in a running commentary.  And, there's art!

Today they reviewed Knuckleheads!